Archive for the ‘Canadian Prairie’ tag
I am back home in Canada. I have been home for almost a week and have yet to discover spring-like conditions. With snow still laying on the ground, slowly melting into what can best be described as a wet mess, it is the perfect time for sitting indoors and thinking. I realise that I have been posting very little here or on my other blog sites, but I am not very worried about that in the least. I haven’t abandoned them, but have simply taken some space and time for other things in my life. I will continue to post relevant articles on each of the blog sites that are appropriate for the theme of each site.
I have been keeping busy with a number of different activities such as snow removal, checking out resources and building extended community networks based on Buddhist and Naturist interests. But mostly, I have been writing. The writing isn’t destined for any of my blog sites. Rather, it is an attempt at a book, what could best be described as a non-fiction book. I have created an outline, written the preface and have begun to fill in the blank spaces. At some point I will call on a few of you to proofread the work in hopes of getting it ready for publication. With that said, I will leave this alone and now talk of other things. For this space, Through a Jungian Lens, I intend continuing with the subject of Mother-Complex. There is a lot more to yet be said.
On another front, I am finding a pull back into reading the works of James Hillman and of another Jungian oriented writer, Thomas Moore, author of Care of the Soul. His books with titles such as The Lost Sutras of Jesus and The Soul’s Religion have piqued my interest. I was led to discover the existence of these books through two separate incidents. The first was a question from my wife about Care of the Soul, a book I read a long time ago. More recently, I received notice from Huffington Post about an article written by Moore called “Catholic Without A Church“, an article that resonated with me. Somewhere along the way, I lost my connection to the church while still remaining a catholic. Other books waiting for my attention are Buddhist in orientation, with titles by Osho, Pema Chodron, Chogyam Trungpa and a few others. Of course I won’t have time this spring for all of these books. Simply thinking of taking time for them is filling me with a sense of anticipation.
With this now said, I will take my leave and return relatively soon with the next instalment in the Mother-Complex series.
In just a few hours after this is posted, I will be on a plane heading south to a warmer place. I have booked a studio suite in Puerto Morelos just a few steps from the Caribbean Sea. Actually, the studio is located about two kilometres north of the town, a more secluded location, a quieter location. I’ve packed my snorkel gear, beach wear, a few books, camera and laptop. I have packed light even though I will be gone for three months.
I wonder what changes will occur in me over these months away from my home in Canada. The photo above taken on Friday, hints that the forces of transformational change, alchemical change, will be at work. How will my relationship with my wife be transformed. This is a shared journey, not only to a winter get-away, but to a continually changing future of relationship.
I have been writing on the relationship between the masculine and the feminine within the psyche of a man, about the journey of individuation for many years. That is the nature of working, thinking, and living in a Jungian context. But there is more than attention to the “self” that is needed. It is rare to find someone who is so isolated from others that it becomes unnecessary to focus on relationships with real people, relationships that touch the outer masculine and feminine that are found in those “others.” At what point does attention to self become narcissism rather than individuation?
And so, with these thoughts swirling through my head, I say, “Talk to you next from Mexico.”
There are only a few more days left for me to enjoy the best of what winter can offer on the Canadian prairies. Luckily for me, the weather has moderated allowing me to go for walks without having to be so wrapped up in layers as was needed last week. The skies have been clear for the most part letting me enjoy some much needed sunshine, and my spirits have risen with its appearance. For an hour or more each afternoon I have been lazing in a chair with the sun’s rays warming my body and bringing me a sense of contentment.
This afternoon and evening I will be in the city of Swift Current in order to watch my eldest grandson play two games of hockey in his “home” tournament. Ironically, the first game will be against my hometown team. Needless to say, I will be cheering for my grandson and his team. Grandson number two will be refereeing a game during the evening as well so there is a likelihood that I will be able to watch him as well. This is life on the Canadian prairies in the wintertime.
The skies have cleared and the snow has stopped falling leaving the world freshly scrubbed with glistening white. I went for a walk in this windscape of white feeling the light wind burning cheeks and nose, knowing that I was alive and present. There was no space left for thinking, just being. At my side, my wife walked with me. We turned to see each other knowing that it was a good thing, that we were in a good place.
The last day of 2012 is here and I have continued to post blogs here, however not as frequently as in the past. I do want to finish the year with a post to share with you. Tomorrow I will be with my eldest child and her family for a turkey New Year’s evening meal following an afternoon at a hockey game. I know I wont be thinking of the blog site or anything else while I am with my two eldest grandsons and their parents. I am learning that being present involves more than just body presence.
Returning home the next day it then becomes time for packing and re-packing our bags in order to finally decide what goes and what stays in the bags. Of course we will have packed too much while worrying that we haven’t packed enough.
As I go through each day until we fly off, I continue to practice being present, even for the little things like doing dishes or other daily task. And each day I will take time to meditate with wishes that each of you can be freed from worries and suffering.
Happy New Year! – Bonne et Heureuse Année! - ¡Feliz Año Nuevo!
Yes, this is the temperature as I am writing this blog post. The sun has come out and it has warmed up from the -25 C that was the norm for the past few days. A look at the long term forecast tells me that we can expect more of this more moderate winter conditions until our departure for Latin America.
Preparing for a change of climate and change of culture is time consuming as well as being filled with some anxiety. Having booked our accommodations on-line in places we have never before visited, we are left with more unknowns than known conditions. Will the various apartments and cottages meet our basic expectations? Will we have good access to local stores so that we can live as if we are at home, cooking our own meals? Will there be enough local diversions to stave off boredom that would come from too much sitting around? Have we packed enough stuff to meet our needs? Have we packed too much stuff that will just weigh us down as we travel from one locale to another? Will I be able to navigate the country of Belize satisfactorily while we are weighed down with our backpacks? Will my knowledge of Spanish be sufficient for interacting with local people? Will there be good enough access to Internet to allow me to connect with you here? Questions, questions, questions.
Of course, I have done my homework in hopes of making this journey of three months a fairly stress-free journey. At the time, the most anxiety comes from a different question, “Will my camera arrive back in Canada before we leave?” While visiting my grandchildren in America, I left my camera in their home when we left to return to our home. The camera has been packaged up and sent to us by one of the major carriers. It is supposed to be here by January 4th, a good thing since we leave our home on January 7th. But of course, the gods and goddesses have to be willing to allow the camera to get here without incident. If fate decided differently, I at least have another camera I can use, the one I used to take today’s photo. It isn’t a DSLR, but it is a decent camera for a point-and-shoot model.
Four days visiting with our youngest grandson and his family were almost all about playing. Of course Grandma got to do a lot of baking with our daughter-in-law and a few other things while I got extra time with this young man who has more energy that can be imagined. There is no slow speed for him, just top speed until he drops in the early evening when it is time for bed.
Grand-parenting is a vital task. Grandparents are magical people due to their unconditional acceptance and their ability to maintain focus on a grandchild. Unlike a parent who must multi-task, a visiting grandparent has basically one task, being a grandparent.
Tomorrow we are off to watch our oldest grandchild play hockey and have an early Christmas celebration before driving the next day to visit the rest of our grandchildren. I will post when I can.
Sometimes it seems nature wants to make statements to humans. In the evenings in our town, just like in many other towns and cities in the modern western world, there is a dedicated effort to set out coloured lights to mark the approach of the Christmas season, or the approach of winter’s solstice. Regardless of all our efforts, it only takes a moment for nature to make a grand statement that dwarfs human efforts.
A sunny morning brings hints of green and gold, hints of a world that is alive. But, unless you live in this land, you don’t realise that this bright winter sunshine usually means that the temperature has dropped considerably. If anything, the weak sunlight leaches out what little life is left leaving plants freeze-dried and burnt. The scene makes me think of how sometimes we allow our thinking self to draw life from our feeling self so that we become lopsided in life, cold and hard embracing facts and a world that is seen only in terms of black and white. Not allowing messy shades of grey creates a deep-rooted anger and bitterness in what is left of the soul.
The work on our home has just been completed and our home is returning to something that might be called normal. I use the word “normal” loosely as each day is somewhat different than the day before, or the days before. My writing has been productive in spite of my not knowing when I would have time to write. My practice of meditation has been shifted almost on a daily basis from what I might call my “usual” time to a different time in order to accommodate questions of those doing the renovation work, or other needs that make an appearance
If it could be said that we approach our days here with set routines, the month of December turns all of those routines on their heads. As in likely all small communities, December brings those gatherings of various groups for celebration of Christmas as a community. As well as these “community” gatherings, there are the smaller “get together” meals with friends and neighbours, with return meals as we take turns being hosts and hosted.
Our habit of taking a daily walk is also tossed around during December. We must pay close attention to weather, especially wind, and the forecast so as to somehow chose the best time to walk and even where to walk. If wind persists, we find ourselves walking in various patterns around the small town rather than following our favoured country roads. We walk keeping shelter from the wind in mind, or at least limiting the amount of time walking against the wind which plunges the actual temperatures to even colder “wind chill” temperatures.
All of this makes for the carving each day as a unique experience regardless of the fact that most would see very little of this uniqueness. One can only appreciate the uniqueness of each present moment if one is fully present in the present.
I have been busy with writing, another project that is focused on Alchemy. I do see the project becoming something significant for me, perhaps leading to an e-book at some point.
As the image lets you know, it is very wintry here on the Canadian prairies. The weather shifts from quite cold to near freezing temperatures making for some interesting scenes in my yard. I am hoping that we avoid the deep freeze of a sustained very cold spell for which the prairies are famous, before we fly off to spend three months in Latin America.
With that said, I am heading back to my writing and my daily time for studying Spanish.